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Tablets on Trial: Windows 8 Tablets Compared

x86 tablets arrive, but can they defeat the hordes of other devices?

Is a new wave of mobile x86 chips enough to help Windows fight off Android and iOS?

In October 2012, Windows 8 arrived in two very different flavors. One was the standard x86 version for desktops and laptops. But the other was for Windows RT, a hybrid laptop/tablet device powered by an ARM chip that couldn’t run any x86 software. It wasn’t until the following February that the Surface Pro came out, packed with a conventional Intel CPU. But by then, the damage had been done. It wasn’t until late last year that x86 tablets started trickling out from Asus, Toshiba, and other usual suspects. Surface hybrids remained expensive, while Google’s Android devices invaded price ranges well out of Microsoft’s grasp.

Note: This article was originally featured in the June 2014 issue of the magazine.